Archive for December, 2016


New Year’s Day Penne Pomodoro

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Ingredients:
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic (chopped))
1 medium onion (diced)
3 ripe large tomatoes (chopped)
1/4 cup basil leaves (chopped)
1 lb. pasta (cooked)
parmesan cheese
sea salt
Directions:
*You will add your cooked pasta to this tasty sauce.
1. Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil.
2. Add the onion and garlic, and cook for 2 minutes.
3. Add tomatoes and cook, tossing, for 5-7 minutes, until they have broken down.
4. Add a pinch of sea salt.
5. Add cooked pasta to tomato sauce skillet. Add basil and toss together.
6. Finish with an extra drizzle of olive oil and parmesan cheese.
*Double the recipe, for those who like extra sauce.

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Honey Walnut Figs

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Ingredients:
1 lb. dried figs
1 cup walnuts (chopped)
honey (I use Golden Blossom.)
Directions:
1. Take each fig and press thumb down into the middle.

2. Brush each fig with a little honey.

3. Put a few chopped walnut pieces on top. Push them down into the fig.

4. Let sit for an hour at room temperature and then serve.

Mussels and Avocado Salad

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Ingredients:

3 lbs. mussels

3 avocados (sliced)

1/2 cup red onion (sliced)

1 bulb of garlic (roasted)

1/4 cup olive oil

sea salt and black pepper

Directions:

  1. In a large pot, put 1 cup of water. Add cleaned mussels and cook on a low heat. (about 8 minutes) You want the mussels to open and cook.
  2. Drain well. Let cool a few minutes and then remove mussels from shells.
  3. Slice avocados to bite size pieces.
  4. Slice red onion.
  5. Put all ingredients in a serving bowl. Cover and refrigerate.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take a piece of aluminum foil. Put garlic bulb on top. Drizzle a tbsp of olive oil on top of bulb. Wrap up and cook in oven for about 30 minutes.
  7. Let cool and remove garlic from bulb.
  8. In a food processor, put garlic, 1/4 cup olive oil and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Pulsate for 20 seconds.
  9. Pour dressing over mussels and serve.

New Year’s Shrimp and Scallop Pizza

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Ingredients:
Focaccia or Pizza Bread
1/2 lb. shrimp (uncooked)
1/2 lb. bay scallops (uncooked)
3 large red onions (sliced)
1 large vidalia onion (sliced)
2 cups fresh arugula
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
3 tbsp. balsamic oil
2 tsp. white sugar
olive oil
Directions:
1. In a skillet, put 1 tbsp. olive oil. Cook shrimp and scallops. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Turn shrimp and scallops while cooking. Should take no more than 5 minutes to cook. Set to the side.
2. In a skillet, put 2 tbsp. of olive oil. Cook sliced onions. Stir frequently. When they are tender, add balsamic vinegar and sugar. Stir together. Cook an additional 2 minutes. Set onions to the side. (If it’s to oily, drain some of the excess.)
3.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brush a little olive oil of focaccia/pizza bread. Place on a baking sheet and place in oven, just for about 5 minutes. You want the bread to begin to get crisp.
4. Remove bread from oven. Spread cooked onions evenly on top Scatter fresh arugula on top. Place cooked shrimp and scallops evenly on top. (If the scallops are large, you can cut them into pieces.)
5.Return to the oven for about 6-8 minutes.
*Serve hot and crispy.

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Ingredients:
1 dozen stemmed strawberries
1/2 cup dark chocolate (chopped) (milk chocolate if you want)
1/2 cup white chocolate (chopped)
Directions:
1. Rinse strawberries in cold water. Let thoroughly dry on paper towels. Leave 2 inches of the stem on the strawberry.
2. Melt chocolate and white chocolate separately. Once melted dip strawberries.
3. Let strawberries dry on wax paper and then refrigerate.
* If you have food coloring, you can add a few drops to melted white chocolate for extra designs on the strawberries.

Italian Fig Cookies

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Ingredients
Filling
2 14-ounce packages dried figs (cut off stems and chopped)
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup chopped almonds
1 cup pignoli
1 cup dark chocolate morsels
1 cup raisins
1 tbsp. orange peel
2 tbsp. honey
Dough
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 whole eggs, well beaten (at room temperature)
1/4 cup evaporated milk
2 tablespoons almond extract or vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Directions
1. Use a food processor to chop figs into a soft paste. Add walnuts and almonds and chop into small tiny pieces. Put in a large bowl and add in all other filling ingredients. Mix well and refrigerate. You can make the filling a day ahead of time.
2. To make dough, combine butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Cream with an electric mixer. Cream until smooth.
3. In another bowl, combine eggs, milk, and almond extract; mix well. Fold egg mixture into creamed butter mixture and beat for about 5 minutes.
4. In another bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Gradually add flour mixture to creamed mixture until dough is soft. Roll dough into a large ball.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
5. Break off a large piece of dough about the size of a baseball. On a floured surface, roll out dough Spoon filling in the center of the flattened roll, then pull the edges of the dough together over the filling and pinch to seal. Put light slits on top of rolled dough. (see photo)
6. Cut roll diagonally into cookies, about 1-1/2 inches long. Place cookies seam-side down on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Check to make sure cookies are cooked through. You want the dough flaky and golden and not burnt.
Let cool before serving.